Evergreen Terrace – Almost Home
Rating: 2.0/5.0 – Band is tight, heard it so many times before.
Label: Metal Blade (EU | USA)
Release Dates: US: 9.29.2009 | EU: 25.09.2009
Almost Home is a record that was influenced by how much everything sucks right now, according to the band. It’s a bit of a dissertation on America in 2009, with a shitty economic situation, how hard it’s been to keep the band going in this kind of situation and so forth. Honestly, I don’t hear it. But that’s what the band says. What I hear is a highly melodic and poppy hardcore band doing the same things that bands of this type have been doing for years. It’s unfortunate, really, because they’ve got an alright sound, but things don’t stick.
Instead, Almost Home is a dissertation on the trend that is metalcore, and how something that was so fresh 7 years ago can sound so formulaic and boring these days. Evergreen Terrace doesn’t fit into your standard box, though. They don’t sound like Killswitch Engage or Unearth. Instead they sound like Blink 182 or Green Day mixed with a hardcore band that has some metal influences. The music is generally catchy, fun to listen to and energetic, but it leaves no trace. To speak more metaphorically Evergreen Terrace is like water poured on your skin; it feels good at the time, but then it dries and goes away and you forget all about it because it leaves no mark.
For the die hards who love metalcore still, I suggest the band, but I also say that it’s nothing you haven’t heard before. What made metalcore so impressive and good in the beginning was that it was edgy, new and interesting. Records like The Stings of Conscience introduced an In Flames-esque technicality and melodiousness to the raw energy that hardcore had a monopoly on. But the breakdown has gone stale (not that it was terribly interesting in the first place), the songs have become predictable and the vocals and choruses on this album lack the edge and excitement that once characterized the scene.
Of course, the album has catchy moments and good choruses. They’re signed to Metal Blade (and they’re not an 80s thrash imitation) so that means that they’re a professional quality band, of course they’ve got some talent. And frankly, the album isn’t hard to listen to or torturous (except for the stupid hardcore talking…), I just know that if I ever were to purchase it, it would sit on my shelf and never leave it after the initial listen.